Results tagged “Literature”

The Scarlet Letter

Scarlet Letter.jpgOn March 16, 1850, Nathaniel Hawthorne's novel The Scarlet Letter was published. This masterpiece of American literature, like many other of Hawthorne's works, is set in the Puritan New England of the 17th century, a time period which haunted the author. (He had good reason to be strongly influenced by that time period, as one of his forefathers, John Hathorne, was a judge during the Salem witchcraft trials.) The story of Hester Prynne, who conceives a child during an adulterous affair and must wear a scarlet letter "A" on her gown as a badge of sin, has left a lasting mark on popular culture, inspiring operas, songs, and movies, including the 2010 film Easy A, in which a straight arrow high school girl sees her life parallelling Hester Prynne's after a little white lie about losing her virginity gets out.

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Feliz cumpleaños to Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

Don Quixote and Sancho.jpgMiguel de Cervantes Saavedra, considered the preminent writer in Spanish literature and one of the greatest authors in any language, was born on or about September 29, 1547. His life experiences, which ranged from being an avid reader and a devoted soldier to being captured and enslaved by pirates, influenced his literary works, including his masterpiece, Don Quixote. The novel's memorable title character is so bedazzled by tales of romantic chivalry that he sets off to save the world, famously tilting at windmills, which he believes to be giants. The book inspired the Tony Award winning musical Man of La Mancha, which in turn became a movie by the same title.

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